In Depth: Homeless shelters
New York City shelters currently provide shelter to more than 38,000 people. That's enough to fill three quarters of Yankee Stadium.
Despite the numbers, many Bronx residents are opposed to shelters opening up in their areas. They fear for their safety because they think those who are homeless are ex-convicts or drug users. Residents also believe having a shelter in their area would affect their property value.
But according to a psychiatrist for the homeless, those with a criminal history or substance abuse problem do not represent the majority of the people who are homeless. Some people who are homeless just simply fall on hard times.
Although there is a need for more shelter, city officials are looking to take a different approach when it comes to getting rid of homelessness. Department of Homeless Services officials say there has been an overgrowth of shelters in the city especially in the Bronx. Linda Gibbs, of the DHS, says it's time to focus less on providing shelters as a solution.
The mayor recently announced a new initiative aimed at decreasing the number of people in shelters by finding them permanent housing. With his new prevention plan, the mayor is hoping to wipe out homelessness in NYC within ten years.